Summary: An insight into the patient persistence of the Lord in calling people to live godly.
SIN BY ANY OTHER NAME
You’ve probably heard the saying, “A rose by any other name would still smell sweet.” Many things have a core-trait that isn’t changed when the name is changed. A rose could be called a skip but it would still smell sweet. Sin, on the other hand has gone through many name-changes but it still remains as dangerous as ever.
Throughout the Bible we find examples of sin ranging from lies to murder to blasphemy. The Bible is honest enough to call sin “sin”. There is no effort to call it an alternate life style or pro-choice. If it’s sin, it’s wrong. If it’s righteous, it’s right.
The problem of sin is endemic to humankind. None of us managed to enter into life pure and perfect. We all have sinned and rejected God’s plan for us. It took several sessions at the door before we were willing to open to the Master and see what he wanted. He may still be knocking.
This poor unfortunate woman (John 8) had spent enough time in the profession of prostitution to know she was laden with sin. She didn’t smell sweet! She knew she should change but felt powerless to make the leap and go in a new direction.
I. SHE WAS GUILTY
(A) She made no attempt to deny it. (v.4) The Lord had her number.
(B) The male companion had escaped but was equally guilty.
(C) The Law of Moses demanded stoning but this was rarely enforced.
(D) Roman law did not consider adultery a capital offense.
(E) She had finally opened the door and listened to the Master.
II. THEY WERE GUILTY
(A) They were quick to condemn but offered no constructive hope.
(B) They failed to consider their own limitations. (Gal 6:1)
(C) They were more interested in the Law than in her.
(D) Jesus wasn’t hurling stones; he was knocking at her door.
III. WE ARE GUILTY
(A) We carry a massive load of selfishness and sin.
(B) The curse of Adam’s sin hangs over us until we open the door.
(C) Sin is written all over our society as lawlessness, iniquity, immorality & unbelief.
(D) We ignore the knock at the door for several reasons: 1. Our ears have grown deaf and we don’t hear 2. Ashamed because he knows our works. 3. Our friends won’t approve. 4. Preoccupied with new interests. 5. Too weak to reach the door. (Gal 6:1)
IV. TIME IS WORKING AGAINST US
(A) The Lord won’t knock forever. (Genesis 6:3)
(B) Our choices have brought us to this point. If we want to change we’ll have to do something different from what we’ve been doing.
(C) Ananias & Sapphira thought one more lie wouldn’t matter. (Acts 5)
(D) Samson thought he could continue playing with sin. (Judges 16)
V. CONVICTION IS A KINDNESS
(A) This woman was on a dead-end road until conviction came.
(B) W. Noble King defines “conviction” as a guilty hatred of sin.
(C) You do hear Him knocking at your door don’t you?
VI. MERCY IS WAITING AT THIS MOMENT
(A) There is provision for your sin. (Romans 5:8)
(B) Jesus could not condone her continuation in sin. (John 8:11)
(C) Jesus chose to forgive her, not stone her.
(D) She chose to accept mercy and change her lifestyle.
(E) God said, “I will not always strive with man” so the call is urgent.
(F) Come to Him now! Don’t attempt to legitimize your sin.
(G) Closing hymn: Just As I Am (WIS) 232
17 November 2002
Pillar of Fire Chapel (London)
Bernard Dawson, pastor